Evening “Walks Through History

Series – 2020

2020 will mark the ninth year of  Licensed Battlefield Guide-led  “Walks Through History.”  Each Tuesday evening, Guides will  lead an evening walk dedicated to a specific topic.  These are ideal for those who desire a more in-depth look at one aspect of the Battle of Gettysburg, or for those simply looking for something to do on a beautiful, and at times not-so-beautiful, summer evening.  Each session is offered for a fee of $30, payable to the Association of Licensed Battlefield Guides.  

When:        Tuesday Evenings throughout the Summer of 2020

Dates:        June 2, 9, 16, 23, 30. July 7, 14, 21, 28, August 4, 11, 18, and 25.

Time:          All programs will run from 5:30 PM until approximately 8:30 PM

Where:       Detailed below.  Parking is limited.  Abide by park rules and consider car-pooling

Cost:          $30 per session. 

Special Deal!:  For $300 you get all thirteen programs. A savings of $90!   Click here to purchase all.


June 2, 2020 Evening Walk   “Cutler’s Brugade and the opening of the Battle”   LBG Bill Trelease

On the morning of July 1, 1863 Lysander Cutler’s men, the Second Brigade, of the First Division, of the First Corps, were the first Union infantrymen to arrive on the field and open the infantry fight. Because the other brigade in Wadsworth’s Division was the much more famous Iron Brigade, Cutler’s men were, in many ways, the “foster children” of the division even though they had already proven themselves on the battlefield. Because of this, the exploits and courage of Cutler’s men are sometimes overlooked or, even worse, viewed as the “opening act” for their more famous sister brigade. For almost 6 hours this brigade would engage in desperate combat, during the course of which it would end up fighting against five different Confederate brigades, suffer a casualty rate well over 60% and make one of the more memorable stands of the battle. The brunt of these casualties will be inflicted by Joe Davis’s brigade in the first 45 minutes of the battle.  It is this fight, Cutler against Davis, that we will concentrate on during this walk. The tour will entail modest walking.

Meeting place: At the Wadsworth statue on Reynold’s Avenue. 

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June 9, 2020 Evening Walk        “Doles Brigade”     LBG Steve Slaughter

On the afternoon of July 1st, Brig. Gen. George Pierce Doles’ brigade of four hard-fighting Georgia regiments, the 4th, 12th, 21st, and 44th, approached Gettysburg from the north with the rest of Gen. Robert Rodes’ Division of the Confederate Second Corps. Soon, Doles Brigade of approximately 1,300 men would be given the daunting task of protecting the left flank of Rodes Division and holding at bay any Federal units who might threaten and imperil the left of the division and buying time until the anticipated arrival of Jubal Early’s Division. Walk with us as we follow the path of Doles Brigade in the fields north of town, interpret the dramatic action in which Doles Brigade would decimate the hapless 157th NY Infantry in a matter of minutes, and discuss the brigade’s advance across the campus of Pennsylvania College as they would become one of the first Confederate units to enter the town of Gettysburg, eventually taking up position facing south along Middle Street. Light to moderate physical exertion, walking short distances. Field boots footware is highly recommended.

Meeting place: At the “Gettysburg Supersonic” convenience store along the Carlisle Road, Route 34 North, across from the historic Samuel Cobean farm. 

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June 16, 2020 Evening Walk      “Death seemed to be holding a carnival – Rhode Island at Gettysburg”   LBG Rob Abbott 

Rhode Island is frequently marginalized in the larger Gettysburg narrative. We frequently drive past the 2d RI in reserve on Munshower Hill and assume Rhode Island to be only minor participants. The Ocean State has an infantry regiment and five artillery batteries involved in the battle.  Three of these five artillery batteries, Arnold, Brown and Bucklyn are in the thick of the heaviest fighting.   As we dig a bit deeper, be prepared for the profound impact that this small State’s leaders and men had on the battle.

Meeting place: The Angle on Hancock Avenue.  There will be five stands with moderate to easy walking.  We intend to walk from The Angle out to Brown’s original position by the Codori Farm (and back), so be prepared for a short walk through the grass.

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June 23, 2020 Evening Walk   “What Mean These Stones – The Wheatfield and Stony Hill”   LBG Rich Goedkoop

This program will be a walking tour of the Rose Wheatfield and Stony Hill looking at the significance of selected monuments, markers and plaques in one of the most heavily fought over areas of the July 2nd battlefield. We will look at the units, commanders, soldiers as well as their monuments and dedications to better understand the Battle and the Memorial period of the GNMP.  This moderate walk of about 26 stops will cover around a mile and a half over occasionally uneven terrain. 

Meeting place: Our meeting place will be at the monument of the First Pennsylvania Reserves on Ayres Avenue and will end at the position marker  of the 118th Pennsylvania on the Wheatfield Road.

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June 30, 2020 Evening Walk     “Greene’s Brigade and the Defense of Culp’s Hill”     LBG Therese Orr

George “Pap” Greene, the oldest Union officer at Gettysburg at 62 years old, will be tasked with defending Culp’s Hill on July 2 as the rest of the XII Corps departs to defend Cemetery Ridge. Join LBG Therese Orr to learn of the heroics of Greene’s Brigade of 1400 New Yorkers (and some I and XI Corps men) versus 5000 Confederates of Edward Johnson’s Division on the right flank of the Union line. Be prepared for some rough terrain.

Meeting place: Please meet at the tower on Culp’s Hill.

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July 7, 2020  Evening Walk   “Confederate Artillery – Overlooked and in Plain Sight”     LBG Jessie Wheedleton

Many battlefield tours do not stop at the beginning of West Confederate Avenue, but speed ahead to get a better view of the Union positions to the east.  This walk will focus on the stories of the men in the Confederate artillery here, and of the action they witnessed each day of the battle from what was a much more open view in 1863.  We will walk the line of artillery from the Hagerstown/Fairfield Road south on Seminary Ridge as far as time allows.  In addition to the guns, we will explore the stories of the David McMillan farm and hidden earthworks.  Easy roadside walking will be involved, with occasional forays into the weeds.

Meeting place: National Guard Armory building on Seminary Ridge (315 West Confederate Avenue).

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July 14, 2020 Evening Walk   “When Heartbeats Measure Time: Battlefield Surgical Care at Gettysburg”  LBGs Rick Schroeder and Fran Feyock

“…the minnie ball caused a fracture, through which the pulsations of the brain were visible.” D.M. Brobaker Assistant Surgeon, Camp Letterman.  What would a practicing Orthopedic Trauma Surgeon and Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist think about the Surgical, Anesthesia, and Medical care of Union and Confederate Soldiers in the Civil War? Join Licensed Battlefield Guides Dr. Rick Schroeder and Fran Feyock, C.R.N.A.  for this unique walking / driving tour to explore this topic from the view of four of the many wounded combatants in the Wheatfield on July 2, 1863.  We pick up the stories of the four wounded soldiers from the moment the missile strikes their flesh, then follow their journey through 1863 battlefield surgical care. For more than 25 years Fran and Rick practiced at a Level One Trauma Center in western Pennsylvania. The presenters perform amputations and administer anesthesia making this program one that sheds new insight on this topic. “They have the ability to take complex medical topics and make them understandable with a mix of humor and technical expertise.” Blending their modern surgical and anesthesia experiences with the historical record, Fran and Rick describe the similarities and differences between surgical care of the modern era and the care of the wounded soldiers in the 1860s. The route of this walk involves limited walking (less than ½ mile) over mostly level ground. The walk will involve some driving within the park.

Meeting place: The Wheatfield pull out on Sickles Avenue.

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July 21, 2020 Evening Walk   “The Dogged Determination of Daniel’s Brigade on July 1, 1863”  LBG Chris Army

The arrival of several brigades of troops from the Army of Northern Virginia on the afternoon of July 1st1863 had an influence on Robert E. Lee’s decision to push the Union Army of the Potomac. The large brigade of Junius Daniel’s North Carolinians, placed in the center of Lee’s line, made several attacks that afternoon in the attempts to dislodge the Union Army from Seminary Ridge. This walk will examine the actions of Daniel’s brigade, and place these actions in the larger context of the Day 1 final push by the ANV, as portions of Daniel’s brigade fought against Baxter’s men and Stone’s Bucktails. The tour will take place over relatively even ground and cover between 1-2 miles.

Meeting place: The Eternal Light Peace Memorial

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July 28, 2020 Evening Walk     “The Philadelphia Brigade Derails Longstreet’s Assault at the Angle”    LBG Jerry Hahn

Most visitors to Gettysburg have at least heard of Pickett’s Charge and envisioned the long gray lines advancing across the rolling fields. In tonight’s walk, we will occupy that focal area of their attack – The Angle. We will delve into the commanders and men that served in the Philadelphia Brigade as well as the conflicts between some units (including Cushing’s and Cowan’s batteries) and how the monuments there came to be. Some old perceptions may change. It will be easy walking and staying around The Angle. A good night to bring your foldable chair as we tame the Gray Tide from overwhelming the Union line.

Meeting place:  Hancock Avenue, near the big tree by Meade Equestrian.

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August 4, 2020 Evening Walk       “Colonel Chapman Biddle’s Brigade on Seminary Ridge July 1”    LBG Larry Korczyk

…the enemy whom we had hunted…were found, and we all felt that a decisive struggle was about to take place.” Follow in the footsteps of Colonel Chapman Biddle’s Brigade of the Third Division of the Union First Corps. The battle walk, 2 to 3 hours in length over approx. ½ mile of relatively level ground, will cover the unheralded and desperate stand of the brigade of New York and Pennsylvania soldiers on Seminary Ridge on the afternoon of 01 July 1863, where the brigade would suffer horrific losses. 

Meeting place: The tour will start at the gravel parking lot for the NPS on Country Club Road where we will first visit the site of the Harmon Farm and discuss the battle action and then to proceed to Seminary Ridge.

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August 11, 2020 Evening Walk      “Knowing the importance of holding that point: Devin’s Brigade”   LBG Britt Isenberg

What impact did the action of Colonel Thomas Devin’s Second Cavalry Brigade have on the overall situation at Gettysburg on the morning of July 1? Most of the focus on General John Buford’s cavalry covers the Chambersburg Pike corridor with good reason. However, there can be no doubt that the less-noted actions north of Gettysburg significantly impacted the day’s, and battle’s, outcome as well. This program will follow the flow of intelligence before the first guns discharged on July 1 to the active skirmish line north of Gettysburg with Colonel Devin’s brigade of New Yorkers, West Virginians and Pennsylvanians.

Meeting place: 6th NY Cavalry monument on Buford Avenue.

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August 18, 2020 Evening Walk     “By our guns to the last: the 20th Indiana”     LBG Chuck Rebesco

The 20th Indiana seems to be overshadowed by the activities of the other four Indiana infantry regiments at Gettysburg – the 19th (Iron Brigade), 7th (Culp’s Hill), 14th (East Cemetery Hill), and the 27th(Spangler’s Meadow).  The State of Indiana remembered the 20th, choosing its flag as the only regimental colors placed in the cornerstone of the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument in Indianapolis.  In 2007 Crown Point IN, home town of Colonel John Wheeler killed at Gettysburg, honored the slain officer by naming the new middle school after him. Join in a modest walk along Houck’s Ridge to learn about the men of the 20th and their involvement at Gettysburg.

Meeting place: The Wheatfield pull out on Sickles Avenue.

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August 25, 2020 Evening Walk     “The Battle IN Gettysburg – Citizens Confronted in Their Homes”     LBG Bill Thomas

As Confederates pursued the remnants of the Union First and Eleventh Corps on July 1, 1863, the residents of Gettysburg saw the face of war not only in their streets, but even in their homes.  This walk will begin on Carlisle Street opposite the old train station, near the site of one barricade constructed by soldiers, zig zag through the streets, and end near Baltimore and Breckinridge Streets, where the Confederates built another barricade.  In this unique tour, you will be introduced to both soldiers and citizens and learn how ordinary people reacted to these extraordinary circumstances during the Battle IN Gettysburg.

Meeting place: Across from the train station, near the Lincoln Diner.

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